Angolan entrepreneurs form trade association in Namibia
Angolan entrepreneurs have formed the Association of Angolan Entrepreneurs Residing in Namibia to facilitate easier trade between the two countries.
According to the Namibia Statistics Agency, the Oshikango border post between Angola and Namibia accounted for 46,4% of the N$19,9 million informal cross border trade in 2019.
Angola ambassador to Namibia Jovelina Imperial e Costa said the association is in line with one of the main objectives of the Angolan government to diversify the economy by bringing new investors to Angola.
She made these remarks at the launch of the association in Windhoek earlier this month.
She added that the Angolan embassy in Namibia will give the association all the necessary institutional support, so that entrepreneurs can engage in activities that will bring the business communities of both countries together.
The president-elect of the Association of Angola Entrepreneurs Residing in Namibia (AEARN), António Sebastião Vemba gave the assurance that they will work with the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Namibia to help entrepreneurs expand their businesses in both countries.
The AEARN aims to promote and support cooperation between Angolan and Namibian entrepreneurs, promoting commercial and technological exchange for the development of both countries.
Public relations director of AEARN Mariano Euclides da Cunha said the association is ready to engage entrepreneurs from both countries, as traders from Angola still use the Oshikango border since the flights from Angola to Hosea Kutako Airport in Windhoek are still banned.
Most Angolans are believed to be engaged in import and export services, hospitality and tourism, transport shuttles, mining, beauty and catering services.
Three years ago Angola and Namibia signed cooperation agreements during president Joao Lourenco's state visit to Namibia.
The agreement was to help develop and implement programmes that enhance the sustainable use of natural and cultural heritage to improve the livelihoods of local communities within and around the coastal borders, Lourenco said.
Namibia and Angola already have several other cooperation agreements in various areas, such as energy, education, health, trade, environment, the Baynes hydropower project, currency conversion, tourism and agriculture.
Lourenço said during the signing of the agreements that he wants the ministers and business people of the two countries to start engaging each other and identifying areas of cooperation to enhance trade and economic relations.
Informal Cross Border Trade Surveys (ICBTS) conducted by NSA in 2019 on merchandise trade transactions between residents and non-residents across the economic boundaries that are not recorded by customs-shows more trade between the two countries.
These transactions are valued below the N$1 000 threshold by Customs.
However, NSA stated that when aggregated, these small transactions become significant due to their frequencies.
In 2019, total trade (imports plus exports) amounted to N$19,9 million up by 29,9% from the level of N$15,3 million recorded in 2016.
Exports made up the largest share of total trade at 83,7% (N$16,7 million) compared to imports which accounted for 16,3% (N$3,2 million).
Informal cross border trade has positive macro-economic and social effects such as food security and income creation for rural populations who would otherwise suffer from exclusion from the main stream of trade.